Jump to content


Photo

Slugs Or Buckshot For Bear Protection?


  • Please log in to reply
8 replies to this topic

#1 AzRednek

AzRednek
  • Members
  • 4,788 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Phx Az

Posted 24 September 2017 - 11:46 PM

Close friend's daughter just purchased a large chunk of land in rural Montana. Bears are plentiful in the area and even Elk and Moose during their rut season are dangerous to humans. The few residents in the area all pack heavy duty weapons fearing both Black and Grizzly bear attacks. 44 mags I'm told seem to be preferred by most in the area. Some carry rifles.  

 

 

My friend's daughter not being real experienced with guns and recoil sensitive opted for a Weatherby 20 ga SD shotgun for protection. We are now debating if she should pack slugs or buckshot. I tend to favor Federal #4 buckshot, my bud, her father prefers slugs. She looked online and is hooked on Hornady reduced recoil slugs. The Hornady slug is only 250grs but a respectable velocity of 11-1200 FPS.  

 

 

If I had to choose slugs I'd go for one of the heavier 7/8 ounce lead slugs. Just not sure she could handle the recoil and get off a second shot. 00 buckshot in 20ga at best is limited to only 11 or 12 pellets vs 24 in #4 or 18 with #3. I'm far from being an expert on bear attacks. I'd be comfortable with just about any buck or slug load for Black Bears. I believe Black Bears are considered to be thin skinned game animals. From my limited knowledge of Grizzly Bears. I'd want a rifle of at least 35 or more caliber.  

 

 

What'cha think?? What load and why would you choose if you were limited to a 20ga SD pump shotgun??                                                                                    



#2 Dr.Hess

Dr.Hess
  • Admin
  • 1,805 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Arkansas

Posted 25 September 2017 - 09:14 AM

I met a pilot (ship's pilot) once in Alaska.  He hunted Grizzly on Kodiak Island.  Kodiak bear, I suppose, which is kind of a giant Grizzly.   He said they used 12ga combat shotguns loaded with both buck and slugs, and as the skulls were basically armored, if one was charging you the only way to stop it was to break its shoulders, thus the buck and slugs. 


So, for a 20, I would say 00 buck at a minimum, maybe with some slugs in there too.



#3 Robert357

Robert357
  • Members
  • 21 posts
  • Interests:A professional engineer, an NRA member, member of a gun range, member of the Washington Arms Collectors Association. <br /><br />I enjoy shooting a few WWII bolt action mil-surp rifles (MN 1891/30 &amp; Arisaka Type 99. I have a collection of Pre-WW-I 32 ACP semi-auto pistols. I also enjoy reloading for the firearms I have. For some rifles, I really like reduced load cast bullet shooting.

Posted 25 September 2017 - 03:51 PM

+1 on slugs of any kind. 

 

If you need to stop a bear it will be coming at you, not running away or showing you its side.  

 

That means that unless it is on its hind legs, (not likely and way too close)you will be a shooting at the head/shoulders and looking down to near level at it.  So the vital organ target area (heart/lungs) is going to be well protected by skull and shoulders.

So you are going to want real penetration and/or something that will get its attention and hurt it a lot.. 

Not sure which model is the "SD", but if it has a migrator waterfowl magazine block, make sure she takes it out and puts it in her gun safe so she can load as many slugs as possible.  Also, if recoil is an issue get her a PAST recoil pad or vest to wear.



#4 AzRednek

AzRednek
  • Members
  • 4,788 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Phx Az

Posted 26 September 2017 - 02:58 AM

Thx for the responses and sorry Robert, SD is an abbreviation for self defense. The shotgun has a short but legal barrel length. Fixed open bore choke. She seems hooked on a 20ga shotgun and got mixed advice on buck vs slugs. I'm assuming the shotgun advice came from one of the Montana locals. She has an AR-15. I'm going to attempt to talk her into putting a 450 Bushmaster upper on it. I'm not really knowledgeable on the 450.but I recall reading or hearing it is supposed to have very similar ballistics as the modern 45/70. Rapid fired 405 gr bullets should be capable of downing even a Grizzly 100 yards away. Guess the next question will be solid for penetration or expandable bullets. .

 

Her and her husband are in the process of clearing land to build a cabin to escape Phoenix's summer heat. My guess judging by the size of their incredibly huge house. A cabin to them will probably be the size of what most consider a house. She got a real lesson in her most recent trip on living in a rural area. She thought putting out and filling up deer feeders a good idea so she could watch the animals from the Air Stream they hauled up there.

 

After the feeders were completely emptied over night. They found plenty of bear and cat tracks near the feeders. They also found other large tracks that they couldn't identify but didn't see any deer tracks.  A nearby neighbor, an elderly Indian I'm told. Gave them some what of an ass chewing on attracting and feeding wildlife and a lecture on the dangers of Bears. Her father told me there have been very few Grizzly seen in the area but Black Bears are plentiful enough they are considered a nuisance.



#5 Dr.Hess

Dr.Hess
  • Admin
  • 1,805 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Arkansas

Posted 26 September 2017 - 07:57 AM

We actually have black bear here in NW Arkansas.  I've seen a paw print in my driveway.  My neighbor had one up in a tree with his dogs barking at it.  Other neighbors up the hill see them regularly.  There is nothing south of me for 50 miles but forest.  Not much east of me either.  They have even spotted them in town near the freeway.  They say one of their favorite foods is bird seed.  I once found a huge pile of poo on my porch rail near the bird seed.  Not sure what it was.  If it was coon, it was a really big one.  I keep a M70 loaded with FMJ.  Just in case. 



#6 brokengun

brokengun
  • Members
  • 374 posts

Posted 26 September 2017 - 09:49 AM

The slug would be preferred but if the woman panics the 00 buck would be better. I would buy both but it was my wife she would have a mag fed  semi auto shotgun with the first round being a slug and the next 00 Buck



#7 AzRednek

AzRednek
  • Members
  • 4,788 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Phx Az

Posted 27 September 2017 - 01:18 AM

The slug would be preferred but if the woman panics the 00 buck would be better. I would buy both but it was my wife she would have a mag fed  semi auto shotgun with the first round being a slug and the next 00 Buck

 
I thought about suggesting a semi but in a nutshell. They are blessed with an abundance of material wealth and toys. I felt a neglected pump will be more reliable than a neglected auto loader. I suggested Cooper's Gunsite Academy. Its about a two hour drive from town.



#8 manureman

manureman
  • Members
  • 498 posts
  • Location:Missouri

Posted 27 September 2017 - 04:15 AM

Proper training was going to be my suggestion,the next piece is tell her to be hell for noisy I've known old timers that wore cowbells or a couple tin cans tied around their necks when out working in grizzly country,best to not need that shotgun at all . Jim

#9 AzRednek

AzRednek
  • Members
  • 4,788 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Phx Az

Posted 02 October 2017 - 12:22 AM

I suggested the cow bells but they don't like the idea. Haven't heard back on my Gunsite Academy suggestion yet. Gunsite does have a shotgun coarse on human and animal protection.






1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users